Four blogs worth a visit — my Pratt Institute students!

By Caitlin Kelly

"It's the one with he goats in front"...Pratt's deKalb Hall, built in 1955
“It’s the one with the goats in front”…Pratt’s deKalb Hall, built in 1955

It’s been a great semester with the four senior students who signed up for my blogging class at Pratt Institute in Brooklyn, a small art school with a justifiably excellent reputation.

It’s been fairly challenging to teach and engage so small a group, but we’ve had fun and we’ve had some fantastic guest speakers, three who came out to Brooklyn in person and two via Skype.

My husband, Jose Lopez, a photo editor at The New York Times, explained how to use photos legally and well; Troy Griggs, a Times graphic designer, shared his thoughts about how to design a blog that will really engage readers and Rani Nagpal, who works with a major Manhattan real estate firm, taught us about SEO.

Anne Theriault, a Toronto feminist blogger whose work on the Belle Jar has been featured many times by Freshly Pressed, Skyped in, as did Sree Sreenivasan, who is the chief digital officer for the Metropolitan Museum of Art.

Both were funny, lively and super-helpful. Much to my surprise, Anne told us she breaks several blogging “rules” — she doesn’t revise every post to death before posting, she posts only once a week and she rarely answers comments from readers.

Here are two of my students, Grace Myers (left) from Bowie, Maryland, and her bestie Ellen Trubey, from California.

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Grace’s blog is Rough Guide to Life, a lovely, thoughtful guide to meditation, breathing exercises and ways to slooooow down and enjoy life; the photo of her in a tree on her blog is very Grace! She graduates soon, so I hope her blog will continue, and continue to attract and inspire readers.

Darnell Roberts, our only male student, and an illustration major, writes this blog about video games. A passionate gamer, his drawing work is charming — one of his super-heroines is called GravityGirl. It’s been a sea of estrogen with four chatty women in the class, but he’s held up well.

Ellen’s blog, He Is Out There Somewhere, details the ups and downs of dating in 2014 and beyond, especially the travails of using sites like Tinder and OKCupid. Ellen is also an illustration major, and uses many of her own drawings to illustrate her posts. Like her, the blog is chatty, down-to-earth and practical.

Tiffany Park’s blog, Morning Calm, follows Asian artists exhibiting in New York City; her blog has won her three internships so far and she’s even been re-blogged by major artists like Takashi Murakami.

I also privately teach blogging webinars, and offer individual coaching at $150/hour (one-hour minimum), so if you feel it’s time to up your own blogging game, please email me at learntowritebetter@gmail.com. I work by phone or Skype, at whatever time suits you best.

I’ve helped bloggers from New Zealand to D.C. to Rochester, NY improve their writing, photo selection, graphic design and theme, whether for a blogs that’s personal or one that’s professional, designed to attract new clients; some testimonials here.

Please visit my students’ terrific blogs — and please comment!

So proud of them all…

 

17 thoughts on “Four blogs worth a visit — my Pratt Institute students!

  1. I wish I could take one of your classes. Even if I’ve been blogging for three years, you can always learn something new. Especially in a classroom setting with other bloggers and writers who all have their own experiences.

    1. Thanks…If it’s ever workable financially, we can always work one-on-one at my hourly rate or one of my webinars, via phone or Skype. My hourly rate is going up to $200/hour in January but the webinars stay $125 for 90 minutes as it’s a set curriculum.

  2. Thank you for recommending the blogs. I’ve caught up with Ellen Trubey’s and I’ll take a look at the others when I can.

    It’s heartwarming, as always, to hear a new generation’s voice. Ellen sounds impressively sanguine and thoughtful. If she represents the women who will be shaping our shared future, through words or actions, then I’m optimistic too.

    1. We had our class yesterday and she was very struck by your interest in her blog..she hasn’t had that many commenters (yet.) She’s a lovely young woman and I’ve really enjoyed working with her in class.

      1. She’s building up a really good back catalogue and I can imagine, once people find her blog they’ll stay and look around. She has a very balanced voice, doesn’t she? She’s not writing from the point of view of a desperate or wronged woman, resorting to the internet in disappointment. She comes over as a sane young woman, strolling through the gardens of modern dating options, looking around and picking whichever flowers take her fancy. And her illustrations are fab.

      2. Yes, I saw that. I’m still impressed. Being able to illustrate her own blog is a great advantage. And a great apprenticeship, I would think. She’ll have an impressive portfolio by the time she graduates.

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